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Death of Former Member: Expressions of Sympathy

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Death of Former Member: Expressions of Sympathy

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Death of Former Member: Expressions of Sympathy

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Snippet Contents:

I welcome Anne, Eidín, Niamh, Deirbrin, Niall, Donagh is here in spirit, Medbh, Eimhín, Bid, his sister, Vera is not here with us today, and we have special memory for Mark junior today. I welcome also his grandchildren. I welcome Mr. Tom Craven, as a representative of the many tens of thousands of people who supported the Killilea family and politics through the generations, as others have said. He was not only a great loyal friend and supporter of Mark Killilea who we are discussing, but of his father, the original Mark, and he is key to Donagh’s political career as it continues. He is a most appropriate representative of all who supported the Killileas through the year. Tom is very welcome here.
Family and loyalty was everything to the Mark Killilea that I have known all my life. It epitomised all his work and actions. It did not require a report from PwC or KPMG or consideration by a sub-agency: Mark Killilea was guided by the people. The Taoiseach alluded to the fact that there is coarseness in politics now. While we may have developed that coarseness, what we have truly lost is the fact that giants of the tradition of public representation like Mark Killilea were guided by the people. That was in every single thing that he did.
Mark mentored many in their political careers, some of whom went on to be Commissioners, taoisigh, leas-cheann comhairlí, Senators and TDs, including myself in my own political career which started in 2002. Much of that mentoring took place - the Leas-Cheann Comhairle will not mind me mentioning this - in 30, Clareville Road, Harold’s Cross in an era when public representatives in the Dáil and the Seanad were not resourced in terms of expenses to be able to say in hotels, as we are lucky enough to be able to do today. In terms of TDs and Senators, the originals were Mark Killilea, Ray MacSharry, Pat the Cope Gallagher, the late Flor Crowley and former Senator Bernard McGlincey. If only the walls of No. 30 could talk, there was much wisdom imparted by Mark Killilea to other people who went on to have very successful carers in their own right. While they were the originals, later there was the former Minister, John Browne, and the former Taoiseach, Brian Cowen, who all went there.
As alluded to by others, and I have the express permission of the author, Mark Killilea’s fingerprints were all over the CAP reforms of the 1990s. Its passage and commentary through the European Parliament, as alluded to by the Leas-Cheann Comhairle, was at the hands and behest of the extraordinary ability that Mark Killilea had to bring people with him. He was a giant in the tradition of public representation, a man who was all graces and no airs. While those of us who entered public life and are in it after he is gone would seek to try to walk in his steps, nobody will ever fill his shoes.